On one of his mixtapes prior to his highly praised debut album “Food & Liquor,” Lupe Fiasco spit a lyric that has stuck with me since the first time I heard it;
“My greatest enemy is my inner me”
While this lyric may seem simple on its face, the meaning and sheer force behind it cannot be underestimated. Look, we all know that there are a million reasons that relationships don’t work, and by now we’ve heard them all; lack of attraction, cheating, compatibility issues, distance, etc. As budding novelist Bradford J. Howard so bluntly puts it in his newest novel Book of Lamentations, “sometimes love isn’t enough.”
This particular post is meant to talk about one specific cause of failed relationships, whether directly or indirectly, consciously or subconsciously; the lack of self-confidence on the part of one or both of the members of a relationship. This can manifest itself in numerous ways; jealousy, overcompensation, anger, etc. When things go wrong, its easy to point to your partner’s flaws as the cause of your collective demise. However, sometimes we have to look within ourselves. I’ve seen it happen (and been apart of it for that matter) far too often. A good guy or girl lands someone they feel is a complete catch in every way, and in the long run, the relationship cannot be sustained because one party (or both) cannot answer the worst question in the history of relationships:
“Why does (he/she) choose to be with me when they could do so much better?”
This line of thinking is poisonous. For one, its most likely that you are also of value, and are just undervaluing yourself. It may also be possible that you really DONT deserve someone so good, but if this is the case, step your game up before THEY realize that the grass is greener elsewhere!
Ok, so I was
halfway joking in my previous sentence….
Look, I know we all have our trust issues, but sometimes, we need to enjoy the ride without question how the car works. If someone is with you and is treating you well, it doesn’t matter if YOU know why they chose you. All that matters is that they are, and it would behoove you to go about proving to them that you are worthy of their affection instead of trying to get inside of their head. Don’t let your own self-loathing get in the way of someone else’s love for you. I’ve heard it said that if you don’t love yourself, you can’t love someone else. This is a cliché that I think misses the point. The TRUE issue with not loving yourself is unfairly questioning the motives of those who do love you. Try getting out of your own way and letting someone love you for a change, and who knows; maybe you’ll grow to love yourself more. Just my thoughts anyway…
“I do this for my culture”